I've had a hard time getting this post out due to the current Chicago Energy Crisis. What? You haven't heard of this? Surely it's made national news! The energy crisis, while severe in scope, has actually only affected one individual Chicagoan: me. Holy shitballs, you guys, I am so freaking tired. Just as my nausea has begun to taper (it has not left town entirely, I assure you), I have been struck by this brand of fatigue that makes me feel like I've been kept in an American prison in Iraq for the past two weeks. Someone has been playing that horrible thrashy music at top volume preventing me from ever sleeping. I imagine this is what it's like. I did watch Zero Dark 30. Except the thing is, I am sleeping really soundly and have even trained myself to continue R.E.M. through the occasional bathroom breaks. It just doesn't matter. I'm still tired. Although I did an experiment on Tuesday night where I deprived myself of sleep unnecessarily (blame: a DVR full of Project Runway episodes) and felt much, much worse the next day.
Tuesday, at the poking and prodding of my friend Mel, I attended the local "Pregnancy and Parenting after Infertility" RESOLVE support group. This group is more commonly known as "Pregnant & Nervous." Sounds about right. I was very reluctant to attend and told Mel that I felt like I'd be going as an impostor. She gently suggested that perhaps that was exactly why I should go. In the end, peer pressure prevailed. There were 3 women there who met in the infertility support group and now all have babies. Then there were 3 of us who were varying stages (9, 13 and 18 weeks) of pregnant after bullshit infertility. The meeting was about 10% support group and 90% pregnants asking the moms deep questions like, "omigod, like, what happened to your vagina?" The answer, "horrible things. but you kinda forget." It was nice to be in a space where we could talk openly about constant (ir)rational pregnancy fears, OBs, crap fertility clinics, etc. Also, the general tone of the meeting was optimism. Here, three women who had gone through the IF-wringer had gone on to grow and birth healthy babies. Totally normal (whaaaaa?). Henceforth, they treated the three pregos like we were going through the same experience which, shockingly, I think we are. Lovely.
I did get an extra boost yesterday that allowed me to get my ass to Pregnant & Nervous. I unexpectedly graduated from my RE. They kicked me out. Told me to stop the progesterone supplements (I am both super excited and totally freaked about this) and to get thee to the OB. It was really unceremonious. My usual doc, Dr. M, left to do volunteer medical work in Kenya so I was left with Dr. B. Dr. B is the not-so-fab doc that told me everything was fine (when it so wasn't) last time and then, one week later, that everything was doomed. How is everything ok when there's blood everywhere and your beta numbers are equivalent to those found in sterile kangaroo blood? The man lacks credibility with me. This fact didn't add to the day's "special" column but did intensify the whole experience. When Dr. B came into the room with his 2 trusty 25-year-old medical students I once again had the experience of the student not being able to find my uterus (I think I got a decent tour of my abdominal wall and bowels). Then, there it was. Heartbeat going strong (hurray for transparent skin!) and actual movements! It was moving it's arms and legs and squirming. J grabbed my hand at this point. That was it. Dr. B told me to stop the progesterone despite my half-hearted protestations (it's hard to argue against not having pudding underwear) and told me I was all done at their clinic. He handed me a "delivery results" release form, - deliver what? - I paid my massive balance and we were on our way. Completely surreal and, for them, a non-event. I wish Dr. M had been there. I could have at least given him a hug.
You know what was not a non-event? Seeing the baby move. It was one thing to see it looking like a deranged caterpillar hanging from the yolk sac. The heartbeat is always pretty amazing. But to see it move its arms and legs like a mini person? Unbelievable. Now, when I'm feeling nervous, I imagine that squirmy being and smile. I tell him/her when we're taking a shower and announce that I'm washing his/her toes. It's just a little bit more real and magical. I'm still a first trimester ball of nerves for sure but less so. I have a soothing image to fall back on.
As a closer, my apologies for the rawther dramatic post last weekend. I was crazy sad. I know that I will be crazy sad again in the near future and that my hormones will punch it up into high gear. I briefly considered taking it down and S told me that I absolutely could not because people need to know that pregnant ladies freak the fuck out sometimes. So there. Let it be a testimony to my fears (that was brutal honesty, folks) and hormones. I will leave you with this: blogging while emotional is like drunk texting. Discuss.